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MSNBC
Oct 1, 2012 3:00pm PDT
or die. >> you just heard paul ryan say that romney will offer the country a clear choice of two different economic futures. is that what romney needs to do wednesday? is that enough? >> well, i think it would be good to just win the debate. that's my advice to governor romney and it's time to begin panicking a little bit. >> time to begin panicking? but don't worry, governor romney has a solution. zingers. the "new york times" reports that mr. romney's team has concluded that debates are about creating moments and has equipped him with a series of zingers that he has memorized and has been practicing since august. zingers? mr. romney doesn't need zingers. he needs new ideas. he needs a new campaign. truth be told, he needs a new candidate. after all, the guy he's been debating all along has been himself on health care. >> i'm not getting rid of all of health care reform. of course, there are a number of things that i like in health care reform. >> well, of course. i'm going to repeal obama care. i've said that on the campaign trail. i think every single day obama care must be re
MSNBC
Oct 2, 2012 6:00pm EDT
of making a point we've been making in this campaign. >> now paul ryan has his own secret tape about the 30% who want welfare. >>> and eric cantor and the tea party strutted into washington two years ago pushing radical ideas. now they're hiding from their far right agenda. too bad we won't let them. >>> and this race has been the tale of two mitts, but only can show up for tomorrow night's debate. you're watching "politicsnation" on msnbc. snoou. >>> mitt romney has been preparing for the debate by debating a republican senator, who's playing the part of president obama. yeah. meanwhile, president obama has been preparing for romney by debating an atm machine. ally bank. why they're always there to talk. i love you, james. don't you love me? i'm a robot. i know. i know you're a robot! but there's more in you than just circuits and wires! uhhh. (cries) a machine can't give you what a person can. that's why ally has knowledgeable people there for you, night and day. ally bank. your money needs an ally. >>> have you checked us out on facebook? the "politicsnation" nation conversation i
MSNBC
Oct 3, 2012 6:00pm EDT
special gifts. as for congressman paul ryan, he's just gushing about the president's skills. >> president obama's a very -- he's a very gifted speaker. the man's been on the national stage for many years, he's an experienced debater. he's done these kinds of debates before. this is mitt's first time on this kind of a stage. >> forget my running mate. the president's the guy to watch but not everyone agrees. >> i know folks in the media are speculating already on who's going to have the best zingers. i don't know about that. you know, who's going to put the most points on the board. >> you are. no, no, governor romney, he's a good debater. i'm just okay. >> so they are praising each other. but something tells me we won't see too many compliments on that stage tonight. joining me now is rick stengle, editor of "time"'s magazine called, who is telling the truth, the fact war. what does governor romney need to do tonight, in your opinion? >> one of the things he needs to do is to seem presidential. one of the things that folks haven't been talking about is if you go back to reag
MSNBC
Sep 25, 2012 3:00pm PDT
context? >> first of all, the paul ryan quote u the stench quote, is an alleged quote. i think he was talking about the broader appeal with the tax system. i think governor romney -- i just think it was taken out of context and it's easy for the media to spin something, a short clip of a youtube video when gov knorr romney explained what he meant. the election is not over. what we need to concentrate on, there are 42 days left and i'm much more concerned about what's going to happen between president obama and governor romney in the next upcoming three debates than in a youtube video on the internet. >> but if he says 47% of america won't take responsibility and, in fact, says, in effect, they're freeloaders, doesn't that speak to the core of who is going to be the president if you vote for him? >> yes. >> what could be more important than that? >> no, i agree with you. i am just -- listen, are these -- what do you want from me? i'm telling you these weren't great statements by governor romney. i'm telling you there is still time for his campaign to turn things around. >> all right. l
MSNBC
Sep 26, 2012 6:00pm EDT
? i s ththa one. >>> plus, mitt romney's crowd is pretty fir up for paul ryan, that is. >> that's my guy,. paul ryan, sbt thisn't that som? wait a second. romney/ryan. romney/ryan. there you go. that's great. >> the cracks are starting to show in the gop bromance. puanouthat by 2012ese folks everybody would look like this. whatever happened to the so-called tea party revolution? this is "politicsnation" on msnbc. >> ladies and gentleme it's time for a new segment. this isal mey it's kind of a joke. watch this. >> my dad used to tell us that one year they ate nothing but potatoes. that was when they lived in idaho. even later in life, my dad e.uldn't look a poto ihe and that's kind of a joke. [ angry ] i just discovered untopped triscuit taste great. oh, it's so good! if this image robbed you of the great taste of untopped triscuit... ...sorry. [ male announcer ] 100% whole grain woven for an untoppable taste. [ crunch ] monarch of marketing analysis. with e ability to improve roi through seo all by cob. and you...rent from national. because only national lets you choose any car in th
MSNBC
Sep 28, 2012 3:00pm PDT
deportation, supporting the paul ryan budget, calling it marvelous, voucher rising medicare. these are wildly unpopular policies that he has stood for and he may not be willing but the democrats are happy to fill in those detail and it's his ideas at the core. >> aside from the politics and the polls -- and we'll go through some of those numbers, i think that when americans hear the choices of the perspective and world view, the big picture view of each candidate, they begin making basic decisions. the reason that 47% tape i think was so powerful against romney is it gave a world view of how he sees the country. >> right. >> and i think that's why we started seeing a whole shift in these polls. >> yeah, i think that's right, reverend. the mask thing by itself is not just positive because we have to remember that there were more george w. bush masks sold in 2000 and al gore actually won that election. so i'm not sure that we can be entirely sure there but it is one kernel there and that's where people are actually focused the most because they are seeing the ads, they are seeing the candidates
MSNBC
Sep 28, 2012 6:00pm EDT
to say was that obama's done his best. he got his stimulus, health care program and here we are. i think that might have nailed him a month ago but something's changed. it could have been something as definite as bill clinton's speech but people don't feel stuck like they did. they think all we need is some other president. that's romney's problem and it's a big one. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "politicsnation" with al sharpton starts right now. >> thanks, chris. and thanks to you for tuning in. tonight's lead, can we predict who will win the election? and to help answer the question, i want to introduce fake governor romney and fake president obama. welcome to "politicsnation" and great to see you. folks, 39 days till the election and there's one way to predict who will win that really does seem to work. it turns out, the sale of presidential halloween masks are actually a great way to know who's going to win. in fact, in the past four elections, halloween masks have determined by their sales they accurately predicted the winner. and guess who is selling more this year? that's right. president obama masks are out selling mitt romney's masks by nearly 40%. congratulations, mr. president. when you think about it, mitt romney's been hiding behind a mask this entire election. a mask he only takes off in quiet rooms, behind closed doors, when he's talking to wealthy donors. but voters don't seem to like it much. and a new fox news poll, yes, fox news poll, shows romney trailing nationally by five points. and get this, he has a lower favorable rating than george w. bush. don't adjust your tv set. mr. romney is less liked than bush. huh? maybe that's something to do with the fact that he can't seem to answer basic questions. >> how was that? >> i have nothing. >> guys, here we go. >> guys -- it's just -- all we've got here is beef jerky? who here wants a piece of beef jerky? that's all i've got. this was given to us by jack link. >> what do you have planned for the weekend? >> anyone else? >> governor romney, they were asking about the debates, about the israeli prime minister, not about beef jerky. now, romney did answer questions from reporters later. but this is what he's done issue after issue, dodge questions and hide behind the mask. but i've got news for mr. romney. the obama campaign is hammering home who the real romney is and what he stands for. he's a candidate who has no problem writing off the country, something that this president refuses to do. >> i'm not fighting to create democrat or republican jobs, i'm creating jobs. i'm fighting to improve schools in the united states of america. i'm not fighting on behalf of rich values or poor values or 53% value. i'm fighting for american values. he's fighting for american values. but the other candidate, the man behind the mask, he's offering us a budget that takes care of the rich but leaves everyone else in the dust. >> show me your budget. i'll tell you what you've got. let's take a look at their budget. why are they doing it? well, they are doing it because they have to. and here's the reason they have to. they cannot possibly, possibly continue to add to the tax cuts of the super wealthy. >> that's what is behind the romney mask. that's what the next 39 days to the election are all about. and a special thank you to our fake president and mitt romney for helping us to predict this election. joining me now unmasked is krystal ball, co-host of "the nik kell" on msnbc and dana milbank. thank you both for being here this evening. >> thank, reverend. >> krystal, let me start with you. romney is falling behind not because he's a bad candidate. are voters rejecting his ideas as well? >> absolutely. as much as he's tried to hide behind the mask, democrats have been happy to fill in exactly what he stands for and what he's been saying in this election and i think he really sealed his fate. the 47% video was the nail in the coffin. really, he sealed his fate long ago when he was supporting things like personhood, an extreme piece of legislation that it was actually -- it actually failed in mississippi, the most pro life state in the country, focusing on things like self deportation, supporting the paul ryan budget, calling it marvelous, voucher rising medicare. these are wildly unpopular policies that he has stood for and he may not be willing but the democrats are happy to fill in those detail and it's his ideas at the core. >> aside from the politics and the polls -- and we'll go through some of those numbers, i think that when americans hear the choices of the perspective and world view, the big picture view of each candidate, they begin making basic decisions. the reason that 47% tape i think was so powerful against romney is it gave a world view of how he sees the country. >> right. >> and i think that's why we started seeing a whole shift in these polls. >> yeah, i think that's right, reverend. the mask thing by itself is not just positive because we have to remember that there were more george w. bush masks sold in 2000 and al gore actually won that election. so i'm not sure that we can be entirely sure there but it is one kernel there and that's where people are actually focused the most because they are seeing the ads, they are seeing the candidates and hearing the messages. i suspect what is going on there is they are hearing mitt romney's message and he is not as attractive as he would have always been if they had some theoretical republican candidate out there. the contrast where it's being drawn the most firmly is working to obama's favor. >> and i rarely get to correct dana milbank, but i would beg to argue that you forgot the hanging masks of 2008. >> i was counting the ralph nadar masks. >> krystal, let me come back to you. let's look at the poll number. president obama leads romney in swing state polls of nbc news polls show him up seven points in new hampshire, even though mr. romney has a home in new hampshire. he's up two points in nevada and north carolina. this comes up on top of other polls, like he's up ten points in ohio. foints. no republican has won without idaho. ohio. these are very solid numbers even though no matter how you try and do the margin of error, he is up. >> the president is up in basically every swing state that you can look out, including ones like north carolina where he won very narrowly. if you look at ohio and pennsylvania, the lead is particularly dramatic and that is driven by the fact that mitt romney is such a poor candidate because he sent job overseas, he worked at bain capital directly impacted people there. and also another thing i wop point to in ohio in particular, he was forced to come out and support the anti-union sb-5 ballot initiative during the primary campaign and that left a negative taste in voters' mouths in ohio as well. >> and sp-5 was defeated? >> that's right. soundly. >> dana, the fact that these poll numbers are going against mr. romney, you wouldn't -- you couldn't tell by talking to governor romney after campaigning the last two days. take a listen. >> it is an honor to be here with you and to be here with these cadets and to be at this extraordinary place that so many presidents past have visited and a president future is visiting today. >> and when i become president of the united states -- i'm going to win pennsylvania and become the next president of the united states. >> all candidates say that but isn't that naive when you're 12 points behind in pennsylvania to be saying that? >> yeah. he's not going to win pennsylvania any more than he is going to win california or new york. of course he says that sort of thing. i was at his event in virginia and he said, if i become president -- and then he said, when i become president. you've got to look at these blind quotes, unnamed quotes coming from people on his campaign staff and they are really murderous things that they are say. he'd be a great commander in chief. he's just a lousy candidate. you already see his own people getting their disstrans from him. i think that's more indicative than any other individual poll. >> let me show you something very interesting, krystal. i'm going to give you an example of how his message is really not resonating. look at this graphic about the most watched youtube videos. president obama's dnc speech, 4.9 million people went to. clinton's dnc speech, 3.95 million went to. romney's 47% video, the lead video, 47%, 3.4 million people went to it cht clint eastwood's speech with the empty chair, 3.2 million. michelle obama's dnc speech, 3.2 million. romney's rnc speech, 1.1 million. >> that's pretty unbelievable chart right there. when you're losing to clint eastwood's empty chair speech by 2.1 million people, that's unreal. >> when you do a video of you talking about 47% by 2.3 million. >> that's unreal. and i think you hit on something very key here, which is when people watch that 47% video, they've been trying to get a sense, who is this man really? he's been all over the board. he was the moderate governor of massachusetts. now he's spouting these tea party talking points. who is he really? and when they saw that video, they said, ah, this is who is he at his core and we don't like it. >> well, krystal ball and dana milbank, thank you for your time and have a good weekend. be sure to check out krystal right here on "the cycle" here at 3:00 p.m. eastern. >>> the real voter in america is coming from the americans. a gop operative is being investigated for hundreds of cases of potential fraud, including registering dead people to vote as republicans. plus, weak tea. the tea party is down and out. does this mean the right will finally actually try to get something done? >>> and mitt romney's campaign is off course and sinking fast. and republicans are starting to jump ship. you're watching "politicsnation" on msnbc. >> republican insiders say that the romney campaign should not hamper paul ryan and let ryan be ryan. no, i think if republican insiders had their way, they might let ryan beat romney. if we want to improve our schools... ...what should we invest in? maybe new buildings? what about updated equipment? they can help, but recent research shows... ...nothing transforms schools like investing in advanced teacher education. let's build a strong foundation. let's invest in our teachers so they can inspire our students. let's solve this. snoop folks, have you checked us out on facebook? the "politicsnation" conversation is going all day long. today's hot topic was the right wing voter fraud coming out of florida. tammi says, they accuse the democrats of shenanigans when they are the ones up to no good. and dana says, nice try republicans, but we gotcha. nice one, dana. we've got the full report on that fraud, by the way, coming up next. >>> but, first, we want to hear what you think. head over to facebook and search "politicsnation" and "like" us to join the conversation that keeps going long after the show ends. my doctor told me calcium is efficiently absorbed in small continuous amounts. citracal slow release continuously releases calcium plus d with efficient absorption in one daily dose. citracal slow release. >>> tonight i'd like to introduce you to the hms romney. that's right, the hms romney was actually a real ship. sent to the british harbor in 1768 to make sure the colonists sent enough in taxes. sure to make sure that people paid enough in taxes. ironic, isn't it? almost 250 years later there's a new romney on the high satiseas. this one, is of course, taking on water and they are not quite sure what the captain is up to or even why he's the captain. here's what ultra rich republican bill marriott of the marriott hotel chain said last night about why his good friend mitt should guide our ship of state. >> both men have vacation homes and a few summers ago i was taking my grandchildren and children to town in the boat for ice cream and we got into the dock and they were all full and we looked around and there was no place to park. i finally found a place to park after 20 minutes and i said, who is going to grab the rope and i looked up and there was mitt romney. he pulled me in, tied the boat and he rescued me just as he is going to rescue this great country. >> mitt romney helped a rich buddy park his late yacht and that's why he should be president? this campaign has lost touch with reality and it's no wonder republicans are jumping ship. they are blaming romney himself for the flailing campaign and saying, in the end, it's mitt. look out below, republicans are jumping ship faster than you can say hms romney. joining me now is erin mcpike, national political reporter for "real clear politics" and jonathan, writer for "the washington post" and msnbc contributor. thank you both for being here tonight. >> thank you. >> jonathan, if romney doesn't make a change, are we going to see more and more republicans jumping ship, in your opinion? >> sure. we've been listening to and watching republicans express concern about mitt romney since he became -- since before he became the nominee. he wasn't conservative enough. his ideas weren't conservative enough. once he got the nomination, those concerns started becoming louder and louder and ever since charlotte, since conventions were done and since president obama shot out of charlotte with the convention bounds, the alarms have been ringing louder and louder by conservatives. peggy noonan, rich lowry, bill crystal, all of these folks expressing extreme concern about this candidate and where he's taking the party and where he's taking the conservative movement. so i think if things keep going the way they are going, i think you can hit that fog horn button a few more times and a few more splashes will happen. >> now, erin, we're also hearing leading republicans and saying things political reported that republicans are losing faith in romney's ability to win. one high ranking romney campaign said, a lousy candidate and republicans repeatedly call romney too rich to care. one romney donor even tells politico he's missing the normal guy gene. i mean, these are republicans and people in his campaign, erin. >> sure. but as jonathan noted, people have been making this criticism of romney all year, going back to the new hampshire primary when he said, i like to fire people. this is something that has gotten increasingly worse for mitt romney because he wasn't been able to change how he is. that is always going to be a problem for him. absolutely. >> well, it's going to be a continuing problem because jonathan, charlie cook wrote today in the national journal that unless mitt romney does something to change his campaign, gop donors may abandon him like they did bob dole in 1996. romney faces the very real prospect that republican donors super pacs and other parts of the gop support structure will towards helping him and towards a last-ditch senate majority and a senate house majority. >> the problem that mitt romney has, he now has less than 40 days to turn this thing around. this is a man who has been running for president for six years and now it boils down to 40 days, three debates, one more if you include the vice presidential debate to try to convince the american people who are now really paying attention that he is the person to replace president obama in office. and it just doesn't seem like that it's working. again, we've got 40 day. less than 40 day. so anything can happen. after all, this is politics. but it seem highly unlikely. >> now, erin, but at the same time, isn't it a little kind of cynical for some of the republicans to act like it's just romney and not the ideas and the policies of the republicans? because i'm starting to see a strategy here of sacrifice romney but it's not our ideas, it's not our policies, it's just that he's a bad candidate. is it in many ways reflected -- is it not in many ways reflected by the polls that is both of the ideas are being rejected by a lot of americans? >> well, if you talk to strategists who are running some of the republican campaigns for senate, let's say, what they are saying is they want to find a way to run ahead of mitt romney because they do think the campaign has not been run very well and he's not going to provide them with good co coattails. they are making their own arguments and it's possible what you are saying is true, certainly, but we'll have to see how the senate candidates are doing. that tells you something is wrong with the candidate, and not necessarily the republican party although it's clear that they have shifted far to the right and that will affect the turnout in the swing states that have very diverse demographic groups. >> jonathan, when we look at the pollings on tax cuts for the rich and who is doing better with the economy and all sorts of social issues that they've raised, these on issues, independent candidates, they are losing on the issues. they are losing on the big picture policy items. >> right. look, you're talking about a republican party, as erin said, that has swung so far to the right that, you know, even if mitt romney tried to pivot to the middle, he would still be far and to the right. these are ideas that are radical, even, and the american people have shown time and time again that this is not what they want. paul ryan got booed at the aarp because of what he's proposed for appealing obama care and his own budget, i think, if they knew all of the things in it they would continue to boo. as someone said on the previous show, the personhood amendment, or maybe it was krystal, it went down in mississippi, probably the most conservative state in the union. this is a conservative idea that's been pushed and rejected. >> that's why it's just beyond the individual candidate, though they are going to try to just dump it all on romney, i think. thank you both. i have to leave it there. but before we go, if you just want to happen to know what happened to the first hms romney, the ship ran aground in 1804 after losing its way in some thick fog. i wonder if this romney will suffer a similar fate. >> thank you both for your time. have a great weekend. >> thank you, you, too. >> it turns out there is voter fraud in america. what is being done by republicans. new investigations against the gop operative working in four states, including florida. but, first, we have the 411 on the right wing's bogus complaint about obama phones. stay with us. >> people are clamoring for more taxes from the romney campaign. today the romney campaign had this to say. >> good news, america. mitt romney recognizes that they want additional information. today he's releasing his last ten years of taxadermy. jack, you're a little boring. boring. boring. [ jack ] after lauren broke up with me, i went to the citi private pass page and decided to be...not boring. that's how i met marilyn... giada... really good. yes! [ jack ] ...and alicia. ♪ this girl is on fire [ male announcer ] use any citi card to get the benefits of private pass. more concerts, more events, more experiences. [ jack ] hey, who's boring now? [ male announcer ] get more access with the citi card. [ crowd cheering, mouse clicks ] his morning starts with arthritis pain. and two pills. afternoon's overhaul starts with more pain. more pills. triple checking hydraulics. the evening brings more pain. so, back to more pills. almost done, when... hang on. stan's doctor recommended aleve. it can keep pain away all day with fewer pills than tylenol. this is rudy. who switched to aleve. and two pills for a day free of pain. ♪ and get the all day pain relief of aleve in liquid gels. >>> i know it's crazy. we've got their number so let's call them on it. oh, hello. i didn't notice you were there. i was talking with a friend about the latest phony attack on the president. some republicans are saying he's giving away free cell phones to get votes. the drudge report posted this headline saying a woman got a free phone from the president. rush limbaugh quickly picked up the line. >> voting for obama's not about hard work. go talk to the cell phone lady. voting for obama's not about hard work. it's about just the opposite. >> the right wings all dialed in on their latest 47% talking point. too bad the fact ts can't get through. there is a national program to help low-income people get subsidized phone services. but they aren't obama phone. the idea of getting universal phone service dates back to the 1930s, decades before the obama was born. the current program that helps people get phones started under president reagan. when did it begin including cell phones? in 2008. that's right. under president bush. so a policy dating back to the great depression, formalized by president reagan and expanded by president bush is somehow president obama's fault? did the right wing think i wouldn't give viewers the 411 on this? nice try. but we've got you. since ameriprise financial was founded back in 1894, they've been committed to putting clients first. helping generations through tough times. good times. never taking a bailout. there when you need them. helping millions of americans over the centuries. the strength of a global financial leader. the heart of a one-to-one relationship. together for your future. ♪ i'm also a survivor of ovarian a writand uterine cancers. together for your future. i even wrote a play about that. my symptoms were a pain in my abdomen and periods that were heavier and longer than usual for me. if you have symptoms that last two weeks or longer, be brave, go to the doctor. ovarian and uterine cancers are gynecologic cancers. symptoms are not the same for everyone. i got sick...and then i got better. >>> the election is on. voters in 30 states are already choosing their next president. these are voters today in iowa. republicans have been pushing the idea that there's a huge problem with voter fraud in this country. there's not. but now we're getting troubling reports of voter fraud committed by republicans. joining me to help explain those allegations is michael isakoff, nbc news national investigative correspondent. thanks for being here, michael. >> good to be with you. >> now, the republican national committee hired a firm to register voters. then what happened? >> well, that's right. strateg strategic allied consulting is the name of the firm run out of arizona and it was paid over $3 million to register republican voters in five battleground state. the problem began in palm beach county, of all places, when the election supervisor spotted 106 suspicious forms submitted by one of the firm's employees. these included similar signatures on the forms. in other words, they all looked alike, like one person had signed them. others had links to show them to a gas station and a land rover dealership. she reported this to the state's attorneys office to see who signed them. at the same time, there are at least seven other counties that have reported similarities on forms submitted by employees throughout this one firm. i've confirmed today, this florida secretary of state's office has asked for a statewide criminal inquiry into the firm by the florida department of law enforcement. the republican national committee in damage control has fired the firm across the country and the florida republican party has submitted its own complaint against the firm to the secretary of state's office. i have talked to nathan spool. he says he's the victim here. it was bad apples that he hired here to register voters across the country but i think some people are asking questions where there was certain oversight that should have been done by the party in florida and perhaps the rnc as well as to how the firm is conducting the business. >> how possible is it that the gop knew something was going on? >> well, look, there's no evidence of that. we do know that sprool has had a somewhat controversial past. he's been accused of election irregularities going back to 2004 when democrats accused him of throwing away voter registration forms. no criminal charges were filed against him but it is interesting that sprool has said that the strategic allied consulting was only formed in june, that it was formed under this different name, a new name, so that democrats and the media would not raise questions tieing it back to him and make issues of the controversies that have surrounded him in the past. so there was a little bit of subtrifuge in the formation of the firm. >> interesting. michael isakoff, thanks for your time tonight. >> thank you. >>> speaking about republican voter fraud in florida, i had jim greer, the florida chair of the former -- the former florida chair of the republican party on the show and he told me what this is really all about. watch. >> i sat in on many meetings where it was discussed of how to make sure that what happened in 2008, when president obama brought out the college age voter, the minority voters, never happened again. make sure the republican party has an advantage in this upcoming election by reducing early voting, putting roadblocks up for potential voter, latinos, african-americans to exercise their right to vote. >> let's bring in melissa harris-perry. what do you make of this ironic twist in the voter fraud story? >> i think there's a couple of important points here. one, the things that republicans have been doing in state legislatures across the country to so-call address voter fraud, things like ending early voting, limiting the hours of the polls and, of course, the i am poe significance of voter i.d., none of those measures would impact the kind of voter fraud that it looks like we're seeing currently in florida. so whether or not the gop was itself part of what this firm is doing, what we do know is that their so-called remedies, voter suppression efforts, do nothing to address this kind of fraud. and the other thing that i think is really important here is it reminds us how antiquated our election system is, that we are still dealing with paper and pencil. i mean, my students at universities don't even turn in paper that way. we have much more sophisticated ways of registers voters and just how little investment there's been in this country of bringing us into the 21st century. >> isn't it interesting that isakoff says that the group that's been given millions of dollars now -- >> yep. >> only formed in june? why would you hire a group that just started and give the millions of dollars to do registration at the same time that you're running around the country dealing with voter fraud and if it hadn't been for groups like ours and others, it wouldn't have become a national issue? >> and especially in florida where what they tried to do was limit the ability of third parties to do voter registration at all where you had decades old -- >> around voter registration? >> around voter registration. they tried to limit these third parties from being able to do that and at the same time that they are bringing in this sort of so-called new kid on the block. isakoff is right, this is someone that's long been there and just changed their name. >> and that's the point. if they didn't have some knowledge of who the person was, you wouldn't give millions of dollars to an outfit a month or two old. >> well, you might. >> but the fact of the matter is, while we're seeing all of these state laws changing, the irony is this allegation with this guy in florida. but at the same time we're still fighting these laws that are really inhibiting people when there's no fraud. >> that's right. and people who have every right to vote, who should simply be able to show up and vote, and particularly when you look at pennsylvania and the madness going on there, these are suppress sif efforts. >> thank you, melissa. be sure to watch melissa harr harris-perry right here at 10:00 a.m. on msnbc on saturday and sunday. >>> not any more and he's their guy and they are not hiding it now. >>> plus, you won't believe what a republican volunteer said about the president while trying to drum up support for mitt romney. we'll play you the tape. 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[ beeping ] ...that helps remind you that the highway might not be as desolate... as you thought. ♪ >>> the tea party is running out of steam and it might lead to a big change in washington after the election. that's next. g up some, brochures, posters copies of my acceptance speech. great! it's always good to have a backup plan, in case i get hit by a meteor. wow, your hair looks great. didn't realize they did photoshop here. hey, good call on those mugs. can't let 'em see what you're drinking. you know, i'm glad we're both running a nice, clean race. no need to get nasty. here's your "honk if you had an affair with taylor" yard sign. looks good. [ male announcer ] fedex office. now save 50% on banners. look! she wears the scarlet markings! [ man ] out! your kind is not welcome here! nor your odd predilections! miracle whip is tangy and sweet, not odd. [ man ] it's evil! if you'd try it, you'd know. she speaketh the truth! [ crowd gasps ] [ woman ] reverend? ♪ can i have some? ♪ >>> two years ago the tea party rode into washington thinking they own the place. then came the obstruction, the outbursts, the disrespect. well, we're starting to see them crack. take in the gop candidate for the senate, richard murdoch. he bragged about refusing to compromise. >> i certainly think that bipartisanship ought to consist of democrats coming to the republican point of view. >> bipartisanship means they have to come our way. >> but today we're learning he's changing his tune to woo indiana moderates. all of a sudden he says he'll support parts of president obama's health care law, protect social security and medicare and even entertain the idea of compromise. why the sudden change of heart? could it be because he's losing his senate race and we're seeing the tea party stars fighting for their political lives. america's rejecting radicalism. as i always say, do unpopular things, become unpopular. with the tea party decline, will the parties be able to get something done in washington after the election is the question. joining me now, karen finney, msnbc political analyst and former communications director of the democratic national committee and e.j. dionne, columnist for "the washington post," and he's writing today about whether this election can fix what is wrong thanks to both of you for being here. what has to happen to get washington working again? >> well, i think -- i'm really glad you're doing this segment. because if president obama does win this election, one of the biggest debates, important to everybody and not just republicans, would be the debate inside the republican party about why they lost. and the right wing is going to want to blame romney, say he didn't present them and we have a stake with the tea party and the right. if, however, the republicans start losing some of these seats, losing and walsh and bachmann and allen west, then it's going to be harder for the right end of the party to argue our ideas went untainted and i think if some of these folks actually lose the election, the more moderate conservatives in the party will be able to say, this wasn't just about romney. this was about a set of ideas that put us way outside the mainstream and that's why these races and others like them really matter. >> karen, in light of that, because that is exactly what i'm driving at -- >> yep. >> joe walsh is running against tam knee duck worth in illinois. he's losing the race by 14 points. some of the biggest tea party seats in the house are being challenged. michele bachmann swept into office in 2010 with a 13-point lead. now she's only two points ahead of her opponent. allen west, nine-point lead in 2010 has turned into a statistical dead heat in 2012. congressman steve king held an impressive 33% lead in 2010, is now down to single digits. is this a rejection of their ideas and could lead to the country moving away from this extreme right philosophy in terms of a takeover by politics in washington? >> yes, if as president obama said, because he was right when he said that real power is not here in washington, you don't change washington from the inside, it does mean that people from the outside, it's not just about who gets elected. that's very important. and then people outside of washington have to keep the pressure on their members of congress to hold them accountable for what they said they were going to do. when we've seen people do that over the course of the last couple of years, that's the only time we've actually ever seen congress act that or coming to a fiscal cliff and over a deadline. you know, rev, i like what you're saying. i think we do not fully do our job back in 2010 and understand the tea party. we easily bought into the narrative and i think there was a whole astro turf movement with dick armey and not fully understanding that you can win with the radical ideas in gerimander districts maybe once but you cannot win statewide and you did not win a presidential election given the changing demographics of the country. you simply cannot. >> e.j., they were beating a drum about the deficit which is important but when you look at the concerns of american, let's look at the top five concerns. one, the economy. two, jobs. three, health care. four, education. five was the budget deficit. so no one's minimizing the importance of the deficit but there really is not a program that deals with the other four and they are using extreme measures and cutting up various entitlements and americans that want to deal with the deficit. >> i think what happened in 2010 and democrats in a way allowed this to happen is that the republicans succeeded in making the deficit a central issue and a stand in for people's economic worries across the board. >> right. >> i think now it's much clearer to people that these two things are related but they are quite separate and there are moments when balancing the budget or cutting spending on things like schools and public safety can actually make unemployment worse. i think something else important has happened, which is the health care law was very unpopular on election day back then. the health care law is gaining ground. and they were demobilized, the democrats last time. they are not demobilized this time. >> they were strutting around, the tea partyiers in their outfits and rallies. where is the big strut? you couldn't go to warning tshi without seeing them. i haven't seen any of the tea party rallies. what happened? >> the last rally they tried to have was dramatically reduced in size. what happened, again, is we started to hear and see these stories that there were tea party people disappointed with the results that they were getting out of washington and, again, i think that people bought into the rhetoric. shame on democrats. we did not do a great job in 2010. so they strutted in and m misinterpreted what the election was about. here's the thing, voters also learned from, thanks to the tea party, you better have the details. talk about the deficit and tell me the details. >> i'm going to have to leave it there. thank you, karen. thank you, e.j. dionne. both of you have a great weekend. thank you for your time. >> you, too. >> we'll be right back. [ female announcer ] research suggests cell health plays a key role throughout our lives. one a day women's 50+ is a complete multivitamin designed for women's health concerns as we age. it has more of 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day 50+. less expensive option than a traditional lawyer? at legalzoom you get personalized services for your family and your business that's 100% guaranteed. so go to legalzoom.com today for personalized, affordable legal protection. >>> we're 39 days to the ee electric. more des rate the right wing gets, the more uglier they get. in florida called president obama a muslim and a socialist. in a phone bank call for the romney campaign. >> i don't know if you have done any research on obama or not, but is he a muslim. um, he is, um, got a socialistic view on the, you know, economy, the government, the whole nine yards. if he had his way, we would be a socialistic country. >> and earlier this week in virginia, a gop group posted offensive photos of the president on facebook, photoshopped to make him look like a witch doctor or caveman, even one showing the president beg the country, come on baby, give me one more chance. but there's also real big money behind some of this ugliness. the daily beast reports voters in three key states from day one has been a neverending onslaught of ugly attacks but this garbageness shows their weakness. they can't go on the substance so they go ugly. it's not bertha time it's primetime. two men go under the lights for the first debate and as we head to the home stretch, the other side will keep this ugliness going. so what are you doing to combat
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Oct 3, 2012 3:00pm PDT
live edition of "hardball." "politicsnation" with al sharpton starts right now. >>> thanks, chris. and thanks to you for tuning in. tonight's lead, fight night in denver. in just under three hours, president obama and governor romney will meet on the stage at the university of colorado in their first debate where tens and millions of americans watching at home. the debate will showcase two competing visions for america, two conflicting views of government, a clash of ideas about the kind of democracy we want. it could hardly be a more stark choice for the country. but this is also personal it's about two men and who are and how they will connect with the american people. no doubt about it, this is a big night. join me now, cynthia tucker and erin mcpike who covers the campaign for real clear politics. thank you both for coming on the show. >> thank you. >> thanks for having me. >> erin, let me go to you first. mitt romney is behind. what does he need to cover up? what does he need to do tonight? >> he needs to show, especially middle class voters, that he has a plan. we've already heard from the obama campaign that the president is likely to push mitt romney on specifics and in the past couple of days he has telegraphed that we might see more specifics like immigration, especially tax policy. that's what we're going to be hearing more from him tonight, some specifics so that when a president bushes him, he's ready. >> now, one of the big gaffes or big mistakes, sin nilla, that we've seen from rom knee is this tape, the 47% and that's bound to come ut many say tonight, either from the president or from the moderator. bill clinton today, take a listen. >> i couldn't believe the other day when the president's opponent said 47% of american people who don't pay income tax just want to hang around and be president. we just have to wean them off because they don't want to pay income tax. now, a guy with a tax account in the cayman islands is attacking other people? when you really bust someone for what you did, it really takes a lot of gal, you know. >> now, that's former president clinton. will the president go after mitt romney tonight? do you think? >> well, it's hard to imagine that somebody, either jim lehrer or the president himself, won't bring up the 47% video because it has been devastating to romney. obama has used it in ads and it plays into the perception of romney as a very rich guy who is completely out of touch with ordinary voters. however, i can't imagine that romney hasn't are practiced responses to that. he's already had an ad where he sits down, faces the camera, he tries to assure voters that he wants to help 100% of americans, everybody. but the danger for romney is seeming fake or false when he tries to connect. he has, no doubt, practiced a lot, rehearsed a lot. he has a lot of answers already planned but can he seem genuine when he's given that answer -- those answers as something to watch out for? >> now, erin, the 47%, according to all polling, has really crushed romney. the latest poll shows 45% of americans said it gave them a more negative view of romney. now the polls show 55% had a negative reaction. so he has to deal with it if it comes up and it's likely to come up. you heard cynthia say that he's had to have some kind of answer and he's had to have an answer. >> his campaign had said earlier that, yes, they absolutely do expect to have things come up and yes they will be ready. one of the things that we keep hearing him say on the campaign trail is that he cares about 100% of americans but the real way we pekts them to diffuse is that he and president obama both care about all americans to say that they are on the same pain. that's the way that he will likely deal with it, that they both care about everyone. >> now, let me go back to you, cynthia. cynthia, let me give you a lot of people that are conservative that are giving advice to mr. romney. peg knee noonan says, tell romney to treat the president with represent and not different. newt gingrich says be on offense without being offensive. dash of humor is worth its weight in gold. go large, and explain his tax plan, and on and on and on. what's he going to do? what should he do tonight? what advice should he take? >> well, you know, mitt romney is suffering from advice. conservatives are clearly, clearly concerned about the poll numbers which have shown him behind. the race may be tightening a bit but the race is still behind in key swing state. what advice? good question. i'll be looking to see which advice he decides to follow but i think the average voter want some specifics from mitt romney. partisans, conservatives who have already made up their minds may want him to attack the president. you know, go after him, be aggressive. but i think undecided voters out there who are giving romney a second look want specifics about how he is is going to improve the economy to them, for them, and about taxes. give us a plan for balancing the budget that makes sense. you know, romney plans to cut taxes for the rich, enlarge the military, no military cuts, basically, and he says balance the budget. well, most economists have said the math just doesn't added a v looking for mitt romney to explain that. give us some straightforward answers that add up and make sense. >> now, erin, it is romney that's going to have to convince the american people because the president is the incumbent. so you assume romney's got to bring the fight to him. when you deal with the big picture economic issues and the economic issues that we're looking at today, how's he going to deal with it? let me give you an example. he was on "meet the press" and david gregory tried to press him on specifics. let me show you what happened. >> give me an example of a loophole that you will close. >> well, i can tell you that people at the high end, high income taxpayers are going to have fewer exemptions. >> the devil's in the details. the angel is in the policy. >> can you go into a debate, erin, with just kind of talking around it, the devil's in the details, loopholes without specifying which loophole deductions without saying which ones? doesn't he have to be more specific tonight and really show that he has a detailed plan that is superior or at least equal to what the president has been saying? >> he does and in the past couple of days he has done some of that. he floated the idea of capping deductions at $17,000 a year. so we'll see some of that from him. it's interesting to see what the president might do to respond to that $17,000 cap that mitt romney floated. i am sure that the obama campaign has been thinking about thinking up an answer that he can answer on that. i've also heard that the president is likely to get more specific on his own tax plan for a second term tonight as well. we should see some more from him tonight on that, too. >> cynthia, let me run down -- the debate is going to be 90 minutes long. six 15-minutes long. three on the economy, one on health care, one on the role of government, and one on governing. who does this format favor, in your opinion? >> well, i think that tomorrow we're going to be listening to pundits say that mitt romney did what he needed to do. it favors the challenger just by putting him on the same stage with the president. however, mitt romney has several obstacles to overcome. not only does he have to give specifics as we've been talking about, he has to appear warm. he has to seem empathetic. he has to connect with the voters he hasn't connected with before. but it's also true that pitfalls face the president. obama clearly, genuinely does not like mitt romney. and while he can go after him aggressively on policy, the president shouldn't seem mean-spirited, pet tu lant, or smug. so there are some pitfalls facing both candidates, some mind fields out there. >> cynthia, erin, thank you for being here tonight. cynthia, i agree with you. if you stay on msnbc, the pundits will be out tonight, not tomorrow morning, saying what should have happened. >> tonight. yes. tonight. >> stay right here. >>> coming up, it's rare for these two men to be in the same room and tonight it's personal. we've seen reports of real dislike. "time" magazine's rick stingle previews the big night. and the bombshell tape from mat drudge and fox news turns out to be five years old. their playbook is tired, old, and wreaks of desperation. all of that, plus, the big question is, which mitt romney will show up tonight and you're watching a special edition of "politicsnation" as we get ready for the big debate, the big debate in denver tonight. stay with us. >> we have osama bin laden in our sights and the pakistani government is unable or unwilling to take them out, then i think that we have to act and we will take them out. we will kill bin laden, we will crush al qaeda. that has to be our biggest national security priority. ♪ ♪ lord, you got no reason ♪ you got no right ♪ ♪ i find myself at the wrong place ♪ [ male announcer ] the ram 1500 express. ♪ it says a lot about you. ♪ in a deep, hemi-rumble sort of way. guts. glory. ram. it'll cause cavities, bad breath. patients will try and deal with it by drinking water. water will work for a few seconds but if you're not drinking it, it's going to get dry again. i recommend biotene. all the biotene products like the oral rinse...the sprays have enzymes in them. the whole formulation just works very well. it leaves the mouth feeling fresh. if i'm happy with the results and my patients are happy with the results, i don't need to look any farther. extra curricular activities help provide a sense of identity and a path to success. joining the soccer team. getting help with math. going to prom. i want to learn to swim. it's hard to feel normal, when you can't do the normal things. to help, sleep train is collecting donations for the extra activities that, for most kids, are a normal part of growing up. not everyone can be a foster parent... but anyone can help a foster child. >>> have you checked us out on facebook? the "politicsnation" conversation is going all day long. today, everyone was making their predictions for the big debate. rima thinks obama will be brilliant, informed, and won't depend on any zingers. debbie says, it will be refreshing if romney tells us where he stands on these issues. our facebook fans are wishing president obama and the first lady a happy 20th wedding anniversary. anita says, happy anniversary to two great role models. and burt says, a debate victory would be an excellent anniversary present. i'd like to thank all of you who came to my facebook page to wish me a happy birthday. we want you to join us too. head over to facebook and search for "politicsnation" and "like" us to keep the conversation going long after the show ends. maybe new buildings? what about updated equipment? they can help, but recent research shows... ...nothing transforms schools like investing in advanced teacher education. let's build a strong foundation. let's invest in our teachers so they can inspire our students. let's solve this. [ male announcer ] how do you make 70,000 trades a second... ♪ reach one customer at a time? ♪ or help doctors turn billions of bytes of shared information... ♪ into a fifth anniversary of remission? ♪ whatever your business challenge, dell has the technology and services to help you solve it. >>> that's a live picture of the stage where president obama and governor romney will meet late they are evening. these two men have different ideas on the economy, different ideas on social issues, different ideas on health care. but they do agree on one thing, the other guy is a great debater. mr. romney's senior adviser issued a memo calling president obama, saying that he's a universally-acclaimed public speaker with special gifts. as for congressman paul ryan, he's just gushing about the president's skills. >> president obama's a very -- he's a very gifted speaker. the man's been on the national stage for many years, he's an experienced debater. he's done these kinds of debates before. this is mitt's first time on this kind of a stage. >> forget my running mate. the president's the guy to watch but not everyone agrees. >> i know folks in the media are speculating already on who's going to have the best zingers. i don't know about that. you know, who's going to put the most points on the board. >> you are. no, no, governor romney, he's a good debater. i'm just okay. >> so they are praising each other. but something tells me we won't see too many compliments on that stage tonight. joining me now is rick stengle, editor of "time"'s magazine called, who is telling the truth, the fact war. what does governor romney need to do tonight, in your opinion? >> one of the things he needs to do is to seem presidential. one of the things that folks haven't been talking about is if you go back to reagan/carter in 1980, what were people looking for? ronald reagan, can he stand on the stage with president carter? will he seem presidential? we sometimes forget that president obama is the president. he'll be sharing that space. in many ways, that's the biggest and first calculation that people make. they will say, could he, governor romney, that is, have that role or not. >> and does he belong on that stage in the first place and then does he look presidential? and you're right, because ronald reagan was an actor in many people's minds, even though he was governor of california. and then they were stunned when he walked on that stage and said, i agree with most of reagan's policies but he seemed presidential. >> right. and he didn't stumble and then he was calm. he felt -- he felt like he deserved to be there. i think one of the things that governor romney has to do is not only share that he deserves to be there but that he has some substan, more than people realize. >> substantial and national review reports that romney's team thinks it's critical that romney endure himself to the american people in this debate. they say, quote, romney's advisers acknowledge that it will be difficult for him to endear himself to the country, especially under the hot studio lights but they consider it critical. this is really about introducing him to the country. it's the largest audience he has ever had. everybody's watching. >> it will be the most important hour of his political life. one of the things i found when i interviewed romney before the republican convention, we did it down in new orleans, he hasn't done this yet but he's very at ease talking about finance, talking about business. as a consultant, he was involved in many, many different industries. he can talk about technology, about retail, about cars. i think people want to see, what's your expertise? what is it about your background and knowledge base that would make you a better leader in terms of free jobs? he hasn't he can plained that very well. >> your interview in the september 3rd issue of "time ", you pressed him on tax loopholes, which ones he would close. you kind of went at him to really give specifics. >> right. >> and his response was, i know our democrat friends would love to have me specify one of or two so they could amass the special interest to fight that effort. can he get away with that tonight? i mean, he hinted at details recently but will he be forced to be more specific? >> i'm going to make a prediction here on your show. >> okay. >> which is that actually tonight he will reveal something about those deductions, which ones he would eliminate. i bet he will mention, for example, the mortgage interest deduction, he will say, we will do something about that. i'll bet that he will come out and say something substantial along those lines that he has not said before, in part really for people like us to go, oh, now he's really coming forward with details. >> now, also without giving him an van, the president cannot be expected to respond to something he does not know will be proposed. >> you go over so many different alternative. i bet each of these guys will have seen almost every possible thing that could come out of the ether there, you know, things that you and i would not necessarily have thought of. so they are probably -- at this point, they are both overprepped. >> let me raise another point to you. even written by politicals, they share some light into the president and his feelings about president obama. according to thrush, president obama began campaign preparations feeling neutral about romney, but like the former governor's gop opponents in 2008 and 2012, he picked up a level of anger he never had for clinton or mccain, even after sarah palin was picked as his running mate. if it gets personal tonight, how careful do both men have to be with their tone? >> well, i actually think one of the great myths with presidential politics is that at some point somebody does a story about, hey, it's personal. these were always very competitive guys. it's like lebron and kobe, do they want to play each other? i don't know. but they want to beat each other. the discord in this race is almost less than any i have ever seen. neither of these guys are a hater. they are both very focused. they are no drama guy. and whether they dislike each other or not is immaterial. doesn't matter. >> rich stengel, thank you for your time this evening. >>> coming up, the right dusts off their old racial playbook and rush limbaugh is fanning the flames. it's ugly. >>> plus, the gop todd akin problem just got worse. you're watching a special edition of "politicsnation" as we get ready for the big night here on msnbc. stay with us. >> i don't think senator dole is too old to be president. it's the age of his idea that i question. by bright eyes you're not just looking for a house. you're looking for a place for your life to happen. at red lobster. there's so many choices, the guests love it! [ male announcer ] don't miss endless shrimp. try as much as you like, anyway you like. like new teriyaki grilled shrimp for just $14.99! my name is angela trapp, and i sea food differently. my name is angela trapp, one is for a clean, wedomestic energy future that puts us in control. our abundant natural gas is already saving us money, producing cleaner electricity, putting us to work here in america and supporting wind and solar. though all energy development comes with some risk, we're committed to safely and responsibly producing natural gas. it's not a dream. america's natural gas... putting us in control of our energy future, now. >>> we're back with a live look at the stage in denver where president obama and mitt romney will debate tonight. on the day of the big debate, the gop's todd akin problem just got worse. akin is, of course, the missouri senate candidate who six weeks ago set off a huge controversy with an absurd legitimate rape comment. now slate magazine uncovered video of the congressman giving a speech on the house floor from 2008. in it, he slams abortion doctors as terrorists, saying that they sometimes perform abortions on women who are, quote, actually not pregnant. how's that even possible? but listen to what else akin said about abortion? >> and yet just as slavery is fundamentally unamerican, so even more so, anything that violates the most fundamental right, the right to life. >> he's comparing slavery to a medical procedure. it's another reminder from todd akin about the war on women waged by his party. just this week we saw him caught on tape saying it's okay for a woman to be paid less than a man for the same work and saying his opponent, claire mccaskill, was more lady like in 2006. but somehow republicans are lining up to support him, even some that six weeks ago said he wouldn't support him, like reince priebus, and now calls it his obligation. big names are getting behind akin, like jim demint and roy blunt and pete sessions and michele bachmann and newt gingrich. governor romney called on mr. akin to lead leave the race weeks ago. what does he think now? he might not be asked about akin tonight but sometime soon he will. what will he say? governor of getting it done. you know how to dance... with a deadline. and you...rent from national. because only national lets you choose any car in the aisle... and go. you can even take a full-size or above, and still pay the mid-size price. this is awesome. 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[ female announcer ] get recipes at flavorboost.com. >>> we're back on "politicsnation" with the right wings lame effort to cook up an october surprise in the election. the daily caller website claimed they dug up obama's other race speech and ran with it straight to fox news. >> a bombshell is about to be dropped on the 2012 race for the white house because tonight you will hear from barack obama like you have never heard from him before. this is a journalist that has been tried to hide for years, a glimpse into the mind of the real barack obama. >> a bombshell. a glimpse into the mind of the real barack obama. oh, sounds shocking. so what did they have? a five-year-old speech open ohhed to the opened to the public and widely covered during the 2008 campaign but this caller had a bizarre explanation why old news was suddenly new news. >> people say, this has already been reported. actually, it hasn't been reported and i know because i reported on it the first time. >> he knows it hasn't been reported because he reported on it. okay, roger. roger that. it shows just how desperate the right wing is and today conservative websites jumped on board, going back to their old playbook and dredging up their most offensive rhetoric to attack the president and they've embarrassed themselves with this latest attempt to cook up an october surprise. joining me now is james peterson, professional professor and contributor to thegrio.com. thanks for being here tonight. >> thank you. >> ana marie, this was the big bombshell that wasn't. but what do you say to the right wing in this election? >> you've mentioned it. it screams desperation. it's a 2007 surprise. their timing is off, to say the least. i always knew that the gop wanted to turn the clock back in america but i thought they were going to turn it back a little further than 2007. 2007 seems pretty recent to me. actually, i was watching fox last night with a civilian friend of mine who happens to be conservative and he was very excited to see this tape and when it came on, he looked a little -- he was interested and watching it and said, wait main, it looks like he's giving that speech in front of an audience. so, wait, so he gave it in public? and so i don't think this is actually working with real people out there. >> not only did he give it in public, the press was there. he was announced candidate for president, mr. peterson, dr. peterson. >> yes. >> you laughed. this is unbelievable to me. >> it's -- it's unbelievable. one, the tape's been on youtube since it came out. take a look at it. look at the comments in con tectec text, too. folks like hannity and tucker carlson are playing to their base. i don't think normal independents or the few people still undecided in this race are going to be impacted by this but for the red meat radical right, this is fodder for trying to get folks more ginned up on things that don't matter in this election. >> ana marie, june 5th, 2007, the day of the speech, some of the media that reported was nbc news, chicago sun-times, abc, politico. politico wrote about it on september 7th, 2008. oh, and look who else reported on the video. fox news. >> right. >> back on june 5th, 2007. >> and tucker carlson himself. >> tucker carlson. >> so this is the new bombshell, ana marie? >> well, as a blogger, i'm always happy when the bar is lowered for what news is but this is even lower for me. i think i like to think that i can do a lot of real reporting using google and youtube but i don't think that even i would call something that was five years old breaking news. >> and covered. >> that's right. i've always had a lot of respect for drudge and his siren but maybe it's time to retire that now. >> ana marie makes a good point, though. rush limbaugh is going to get a couple segment out of it. it helps in sort of their news cycle generate more discourse. >> rush came in but i don't think he could help him on this one. let me tell you what rush had to say. he was ann agree guy. >> well, i've always known this guy is an angry guy. i've all known that this guy had a chip on his shoulder a problem with this country and i've always known that he was post racial. >> now, he's ann agree guy because of this speech but abc, nbc, all of these reports that covered it were there. he duped them all. >> the fact that president obama is black actually equates to him being angry. for those of us who live in the real world, this is one of the most moderate and compassionate and diplomatic presidents we've had in recent memory. i don't know if this has any tracks with independents or with folks on the left. >> well, anna marie, dr. peterson brings up race. let me go there. george will wrote a column about the election and wrote a very controversial line about whether the president should be re-elected. let me quote that. he says, the nation, which is generally reluctant to declare a president a failure, thereby admitting that it made a mistake in choosing him, seems especially reluctant to give up on the first african-american president. if so, the 2012 election speaks well of the nation's heart, if not its head. so now he's saying that the nation does not obama want to admit that it made a mistake but certainly don't want to do it to an african-american. that's a new twist in race, ana marie. >> yes, it is. and rush limbaugh has referred to him as the action president. i'd like to think of him as just the president. i would say that they don't like to fire people as much as mitt romney does. so we tend to want to give people another chance. it's mazing how this comes up. i'm willing to give him another four years. i think george will is right about the sentiment of american people and for him to bring race into it, i'm not sure it's -- >> it's crazy. >> i'll go with what peterson said. it's crazy. >> i'm running out of time but the new york times did report that a group of high ro file republican strategists put together a plan to attack president obama by linking the president once again to reverend jeremiah wright. this was in may. the "new york times" wrote it saying, quote, do exactly what john mccain would not let us do in 2008. the plans suggested hiring an extremely literate african-american to sell the message and label the president a metrosexual black abe lincoln. >> yeah. listen, i'm not sure exactly -- >> that's a halloween costume. >> i don't know what they mean by the last comment. but george will who i normally respect, this president has enjoyed the numbers that he is now and despite the rags initialized attacks. the reason this deck was disapproved by romney is because they don't need it. they've had the welfare ads and this strategy has been in place in other ways and it was exposed early enough so folks could see the inner workings behind back room door strategy sessions. >> well, it's playing into that stereotype. angry black man. i know some blacks that are angry that he's not more angry. >> how about that and happy birthday, rev. >> thank you. james peterson, ana marie cox, thank you for your time tonight. >> yep. and happy birthday. >> thank you. >>> still ahead, it all comes down to this. 19 primary debates for romney but none on the biggest stage in politics. president obama's been here before. so what will happen tonight? we'll talk about it on this special edition of "politicsnation" as we gear up to nbc's primetime coverage of the first presidential debate of 2012. stay with us. >> i will not make age an issue in this campaign. i am not going to exploit my opponent's youth and inexperience. customer erin swenson bought from us online today. so, i'm happy. sales go up... i'm happy. it went out today... i'm happy. what if she's not home? 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[ children laughing ] right now, she just dreams of an office. get a free trial at constantcontact.com. >>> welcome back. president obama gets the first question at tonight's debate and mitt romney will have the last word in the debate that 50 million americans may be watching. the stage is set for the highest of political drama. joining me now is abby huntsman, host and producer of huff post live. and she helped prep hillary clinton for the debates four years ago. thank you to you both for being here. >> great to be here. >> abby, what's the biggest danger for governor romney tonight? >> reverend, let me start by wishing you a happy birthday tonight. >> you have a file on me, i hear. i hope everything is fine or good. >> i think we'll survive unless you can't hear me but i would say the biggest challenge that mitt romney has is he's in a box. no matter what he says, it's likely he says the complete opposite in his past. look, people are wanting to see the real mitt romney. they want to know who he really is. i think his biggest challenge is not being himself. >> now, your dad, jon huntsman, was a candidate against him and debated against him. did you have a problem, which romney is going to show snup. >> that's what people are asking, is the conservative romney or moderate romney when he ran against senator kennedy or a whole different version of romney? but i will say, the only way he's going to knock president obama off message is if he does show a side of himself that none of us have ever seen and that's the only way he's going to hit it out of the ballpark, is if he shows us who he really is: >> you have prepped hillary clinton four years ago. if you were prepping the president tonight, what would you tell him? >> i would say take advantage of this format. it's 90 minutes. it's on substance. he has a very big advantage over romney in that he has policies and proposals. he knows where his policies are. they haven't shifted dramatically. he also understands mitt romney's policies and the lack of definition. so he has a lot of opportunity to define mitt romney because mitt romney has been so vague. so i would say keep the debate on substance. take it to governor romney on issues like taxes and energy policy where there has been a lack of definition and really communicate to the american people that they can't take a risk on mitt romney. that if you don't know where he stands on taxes and you don't know where he stands on energy, you can't take a risk that he will do the right thing three months, four months from now. >> neera, people keep saying that romney isn't that good but he has shown that he's riz enrisen to the occasion. let me show you some of the clips. >> is he still the most anti-immigrant candidate? >> i would say of the four of us, yes. >> that's simply inexcusable. my father was born in mexico. my wife's father was born in wales. >> we discover to our shock that mitt romney owns shares of fannie m fannie mae and freddie mac. >> if he comes off aggressive, what should the president do? >> i actually think this is a real challenge for governor romney and if he falls into the trap of being as aggressive in the primary, that will backfire. the difference is that in the primary nobody liked the republican candidates. so when mitt romney attacked newt gingrich or attacked rick santorum, he wasn't punished by voters for that because no one liked one of them more than the other. if he goes after the president very aggressively who is pretty popular with the american people, one of the most popular politicians in the country, frankly, i think there will be a backlash. people don't like him and he needs to get over that hump. and so he's in a box of being -- he needs to contrast with the president but he can't be too aggressive. >> can i just jump in real quickly? i think that we forget that romney is a great debater. we saw in the primaries that he was really everyone's favorite in the debates. so i think we can expect that he will do a good job. frankly, i would argue that he's more comfortable on the debate stage than he is ordering a milk shake at mcdonald's. so i do think he's in his element on the debate stage. he will have memorized lines. the only way he's really going to, like i said, hit it out of the ballpark is to show us a side of him that he's never seen before and really surprise us. >> abby, let me ask you one question. the last time we had an i incumbent candidate that was challenged, ignoring bob dole's attempt to bring it on kind of. listen to this in their debate. >> mr. president, what do you say to senator dole's point that this election is about keeping one's word? >> when i ran for president, i said we could cut the deficit in half and we cut it by 60%. i said our economic plan would produce 8 minullion jobs and we created 10 million jobs. >> i can only tell thaw i don't think senator dole is too old to be president. it's the age of his idea that i question. >> abby, if the president ignores him and goes as clinton did in '96, does that neutralize what you think is a good debater in mr. romney? >> that's exactly what mr. obama has to do. he has to remain calm and look like he is the commander in chief that he is for the united states and if he can -- if obama can be just who he is, there's no way that romney can get the narrative that he actually wants. but if obama can be himself, then i think that he will be just fine. >> abby, neera, thanks for your time and i think you're right, if the president is who he is and mr. romney is who he is, i think that will work to the president's favor. we'll be right back. >> thanks. oh no, not a migraine now. try this... bayer? this isn't just a headache. trust me, this is new bayer migraine. [ male announcer ] it's the power of aspirin plus more in a triple action formula to relieve your tough migraines. new bayer migraine formula. >>> welcome back to "politicsnation." in just two hours, the two presidential candidates will debate their visions of america's future. i had the honor of addressing voters from a debate stage, too. back during my 2004 run for president. and while i looked a bit different then, my passion was the same as it is now. and these debates, it's important to show that passion. these candidates must try to connect. >> what people don't understand is before you can turn people out, you have to turn people on. and the only way you're going to turn people on is you must address their interests and address their issues. >> these men must also expect the unexpected. in my 2004 campaign, protesters disrupted one debate and i had to roll in with it. >> you know i don't get to the black caucus debate and start acting up now. y'all respect our right to be heard like we respect everybody else. >> well, first let me say, to my dear friend reverend sharpton, amen. you have spoken the truth. >> i'll take that as an endorsement, but go ahead. >> now, we probably won't see protester tonight but we'll likely get a surprise or two. voters will be watching to see if these men seem authentic. out there under the hot lights, there's no hiding, no way to fake it. >> speaking on the issues and interests of people that have been ignored, it's almost contradict industry to say, if you don't win, get out. did you come in to win or did you come in to stand up for something and make that win? >>
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